chain well and sail locker design

Discussion in 'Fiberglass and Composite Boat Building' started by robwilk37, Sep 3, 2014.

  1. robwilk37
    Joined: Nov 2010
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    Location: san diego

    robwilk37 Senior Member

    ive been away from my project for a while but now slowly jumping back in. ive decided to tackle some bow projects and have a few questions...

    the space is roughly 5' between primary bulkheads, split down the middle by a BH from deck to forefoot. this will incorporate a chainwell as far down as practical, rode/ground tackle/spares stowage, sails, fenders, washdown pump and hose etc. im wondering if leading the chain to the very bottom of the space is the best idea? is it common to install a small pump under a grate to handle excess water coming in with the chain, and would that pump need to be a macerator type to deal with the gunk? or is it better to keep the chainwell above the waterline and gravity drain? on my boat the difference is about 4' back and 2' down... that's a lot for about 400lbs of chain. also, the well itself - is it common practice to line with Xynol/Kevlar for abrasion resistance? or sheet stainless? or a sacrificial/removable liner of some kind? any other ideas for the best use of this space?

    TIA
     
  2. rwatson
    Joined: Aug 2007
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    Location: Tasmania,Australia

    rwatson Senior Member

    I've been working on a couple of chain holders for a steel 34 footer. The owner is leaving the bottoms solid, to let the gunk dry up and evaporate.

    This is to prevent the mud and muck from passing through the bilges and do more harm.

    We discussed making the bottoms above the waterline to drain back out, but there are issues there,

    I guess its a matter of priorities and secondary issues for each design. A drain would be the ideal I guess.


    edit

    Ps - we are using epoxy covered ply wood to build removable 'bins'

    I would have built Polyester Glass bins that are removable.
     
  3. LP
    Joined: Jul 2005
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    Location: 26 36.9 N, 82 07.3 W

    LP Flying Boatman

    Right, wrong or otherwise, I'll be doing a heavier sheathing in mine for abrasion resistance and it will have above waterline drains.
     
  4. cmckesson
    Joined: Jun 2008
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    Location: Vancouver BC

    cmckesson Naval Architect

    Aft?

    It may be too late and too unconventional to consider this, but: On my boat I moved my chain lockers to the stern, although the hooks are still on the bow. Yes, I have a boat-length of chain lying exposed on deck, P&S.

    But the advantage is that I can raise the anchor from the cockpit, using my sheet winch. The cable is nylon rope up to 25 feet of chain, and the distance from the stemhead to my primary sheet winch is 28 feet. So when the anchor snugs up in the bow roller, the chain shackle has just arrived at the Barient.

    The advantage I find with this set up is that I don't have to leave the cockpit to hoist anchor, I don't have to shout the length of the boat to my wife if she is on board, and if I am alone I am never away from the helm, or the cockpit-led sail halyards.

    Just an idea.

    Chris
     
  5. JSL
    Joined: Nov 2012
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    Location: Delta BC

    JSL Senior Member

    try not to let the chain locker 'gunk' drain into the boat, it can stink things up pretty quick
     
  6. robwilk37
    Joined: Nov 2010
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    Location: san diego

    robwilk37 Senior Member

    ive spent a lot of time trying to come up with a way to use the primaries for anchor rode, but cant quite see it with all chain. thought about mounting the windlass closer to the mast etc. one of the big problems is I like my teak decks and brightwork. 100lbs of winch and 400lbs of chain way out on the bow just bugs the hell out of me though.

    so yeah the muck from the chain seems to dictate a chainwell above the waterline and just eat the dead space underneath. the opposite locker could be full depth for sails/fenders spare line etc with a small auto bilge pump directed over to the chain side and out the gravity drain. maybe plan to bring the chain weight aft for passages. is it common to line the chainwell with stainless sheet? don't know that ive ever seen it done but that doesn't mean it isn't. any problem with wet galvanized chain in contact with SS?
     
  7. LP
    Joined: Jul 2005
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    Location: 26 36.9 N, 82 07.3 W

    LP Flying Boatman


    Very intriguing. I really like the single handed aspects of a set-up like this. How do you protect your decks from abrasion?
     
  8. rwatson
    Joined: Aug 2007
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    Location: Tasmania,Australia

    rwatson Senior Member

    A pre_built groove in the deck with covers would be a great idea. Even a plastic pipe guide, with large guides or rollers at strategic intervals, fastened to the edges of the deck, sound like a possibility.


    On smaller boats ( say up to 28ft ), getting someone up to the slippery bow while you control the course, is not an easy thing.

    I can see how much better it would be if you had a stuck anchor, and had to break it out by heading forward, single handed.
     
  9. cmckesson
    Joined: Jun 2008
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    Location: Vancouver BC

    cmckesson Naval Architect

    Chain on deck

    Yes LP, that is the drawback. On SUNDANCE the chain just lies on deck, and there is a bit of a rust discoloration to the fiberglass in that area. A channel in the deck would be lovely to have..indeed I sometimes toy with the idea of laying teak decks on top of my fiberglass, and in that case I would leave a channel for the chain. But I can't afford it, so it's a pipe dream anyway.

    Also, on SUNDANCE due to the shape of her deckhouse (and probably on any other 36 foot sailboat) the chain lies tight up against the bottom of the house, so it is quite "out of the way" in terms of walking on the side decks. It does of course still run the length of the open foredeck, presenting a foot hazard there, but this is balanced by that fact that there is NOT a whacking great toe-breaking iron anchor windlass right in the middle.
     

  10. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
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    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    Switch to cable and reel them up on drums mounted below decks, be this the foredeck or another sealed compartment that can be pumped out. I had a boat with two reels, one under each settee. The enclosures where sealed with a hatch on top, under the settee top. They could be hosed off and the compartment pumped dry. I even envisioned a wash down system for them as they reeled in the cable, but I sold her before major modifications could be made. The reels had a manual hand crank backup (geared up), which didn't require all that much effort to work them. It's not something you wanted to make passages with, but if the electrics died, you could still haul your tackle. This was an old, fat, no name steel cruiser, from a long dead, likely unknown builder. The system was simple, clever and worked.
     
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